Jun 5th, 2019
The Open needs McDowell
Portrush’s Boy Done Good Must Play
Words: GolfPunk Photography: Getty Images
The Open is coming back to Northern Ireland after a break of 68 years. When Max Faulkner, one of the most flamboyant golfers of his generation, won the Open Championship in 1951 at Royal Portrush it would be 18 years until a Brit, Tony Jacklin in 1969, was to do so again.
After that It would be a further 10 years until one Graeme McDowell came into the world. The likable Irishman is one of Portrush’s most famous sons and he grew up playing next door to Royal Portrush at Rathmore Golf Club.
McDowell, who is an honorary life member of Royal Portrush Golf Club must be worthy of a special invite to The Open right? Sadly, not according to the R&A, and it seems that Gmac has as much chance of getting a special invite from those good folk as he has of walking on Mars. A clear case of rules is rules remember!
At GolfPunk we say Gmac must play and we are going to follow his progress all the way!
However, time is running out and the ways in which McDowell can qualify are rapidly dwindling. He will head to Pebble Beach next week, under an exemption as one of the last 10 winners of the event but can only qualify for The Open if he wins! How crazy is that?
Pebble Beach is the scene of McDowell’s 2001 US Open victory, three years too early to give him an Open exemption. Despite a win in the Dominican Republic earlier this year, Gmac’s recent form suggests another US Open title is rather a stretch.
However, there are five other routes to teeing up at Royal Portrush (and they are complicated so bear with us!).
Canadian Open (June 6-9) - finish in the top 10 AND as one of the top three non-exempt players.
Andalucia Masters (June 27-30) - finish in the top 10 AND as one of the top three non-exempt players [Looks like he may skip this one!]
Final Qualifying - St Anne's Old Links (July 2) – top three places.
Irish Open (July 4-7) - finish in the top 10 AND as one of the top three non-exempt players.
Scottish Open (June 11-14) - finish in the top 10 AND as one of the top three non-exempt players.
So, COME ON GMAC make the dream!! GolfPunk is behind you all the way and we know it won’t be the same without you! And, if you don’t do it, we may have to glue ourselves to the doors of the R&A until they let you in!
And another thing....